For nearly three decades, October has been established as National Breast Cancer Awareness Month universally across the globe by cancer survivors, the media, and governments. In an attempt to raise awareness, hope, and funding for research countless organizations involve themselves in fundraisers and wear the designated color of pink in observation of those affected by the disease . Now known to many as Pinktober, the world famous Hard Rock Cafe launched their 15th annual Breast Cancer Awareness campaign on Tuesday September 30th with a special live performance by Canadian electropop singer-songwriter Lights at 1501 Broadway in Manhattan. On hand at the event was founding Kiss member, Rock and Roll Hall of Famer, and male breast cancer survivor Peter Criss, showing his support for the cause and help raise awareness that men also need to educate themselves and squash the notion that only women are affected by the disease. As people gathered around 7 PM beneath the Hard Rock Restaurant near the stage area to watch a performance from Lights, the intimate evening of music and education was about to begin.
Releasing her third studio album Little Machines on September 19th, Lights kicked off the set with “Muscle Memory.” Mixing Rock tones with synthesizers and bright vocals, Lights had all excited and dancing about the floor from the get go. Taking a moment to speak with the audience, Lights expressed her concern for the effects of Breast Cancer on the lives of its victims and families. Hoping for a cure to this tragic disease, her sincerity resonated through the room as she began her latest single “Running with the Boys.” Taken back by the response of the crowd, who was singing along and loving every minute of the tune, Lights smiled graciously as she played on with more newbies “Oil & Water” and “Up We Go.” Exciting to see the overwhelming positive reaction, this was in fact Lights first time performing the new material from Little Machines live in New York City since the album’s release. Throwing in an oldie but goodie, “Banner” from 2011’s Siberia album continued everyone’s enjoyment as they swayed back and forth and threw their hands in the air. Applauding in appreciation, Lights treated spectators to one last song with “Don’t Go Home Without Me.”
Lights’ positive aura is contagious as the vocalist was all smiles and elated to be present performing her music for such a noble cause. Her upbeat colorful pop electronic tunes along with thoughtful lyrical composition from Little Machines shows an artist ready to take the next step in her musician career. Breast Cancer Awareness starts in October, but it should continue through every day of the year until the disease is completely eradicated. Lights’ appearance was a perfect choice for Pinktober and reminds everyone of the importance of positivity and how music can play a large role in that.